How to overcome fear of public speaking?

by Samantha Smiles   Google

The fear of public speaking is considered to be one of the greatest fears of students. Donít be discouraged by it, there are literally tens of thousands of other students that have the same worries as you do. Letís identify the main techniques for battling with this serious problem and define the ways that help to resolve it.

Identify the Source of the Fear

The most common explanation for such kind of fear is that people do not know the publicís reaction to the speech. This does not mean that the person is afraid that he or she does not have necessary knowledge to make a great speech. The biggest fear is what happens after the person steps up to the table to address the audience. If the person is afraid of making mistakes, being judged by the listeners and getting mentally hurt this can be a big problem. Donít expect good performance if you have even on of mentioned fears. It is recommended to persuade yourself that the audience really wants you to be successful in your performance. This is 100 percent true. The people you address expect great performance from you and always want to get involved in the discussion if necessary. It is important to think that you are the architect of your performance and the discussion. Be honest with yourself about that. If you are, you are probably won your inner battle by increasing your confidence.


The materials you are going to present to your listeners should be read and studied by you multiple times. In order to memorize all main points and other information, you can create an outline and make descriptive subsections. Always include subparts to your outline; they will help you to understand the elements of your work and quickly remind you about important information. The outline should be learned multiple times as well. Make sure you read it before your speech.


Search for conversational or debate clubs in your area. These clubs can give you an excellent opportunity to practice your public speech skills. Moreover, the members can give you valuable tips on your performance and support whenever needed. They had been in your shoes some time ago so they understand you. It is recommended to speak on the topics that are well-known to you at first meetings and then make your way down to the ones that are unknown to you. This technique helps to increase confidence, manage stress and improve ability to quickly find necessary words as well as support them.

Record Your Speech on Video

New technologies can help you to win this fight with fear of speaking to the audience. Install video applications or similar software on your laptop, turn on web camera and get to practice. This is a great way because it gives you the opportunity to see yourself as the audience will see you. Review the tape and consider what might be improved. Moreover, you can show the tape to your friends and ask for their advice.